A year after zero New York Giants were selected to the Pro Bowl, two key G-Men earned their first Pro Bowl nods on Monday. Cornerback James Bradberry and tight end Evan Engram were selected to the 2021 NFC roster.
As noted by Giants.com’s Michael Eisen, Bradberry becomes the team’s first cornerback to be voted in since Janoris Jenkins back in 2016, while Engram becomes the first Giants tight end since Jeremy Shockey in 2006.
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James Bradberry Earns Well-Deserved 1st Pro Bowl Selection
Bradberry, a big-ticket signee by GM Dave Gettleman this offseason, has certainly lived up to the billing of his hefty three-year, $45 million contract. The 27-year-old missed this past Sunday’s game after landing on the Reserve/COVID-19 list. However, prior to Week 15, Bradberry was tied for the league-lead in forced incompletions, per Pro Football Focus. His 17 forced incompletions on the season mark a new career-high for the fifth-year pro.
“It’s a surreal feeling,” Bradberry said of his selection, per Eisen. “That’s on everyone’s, I wouldn’t call it a bucket list, but it’s on their goal list, to be Pro Bowl, to be All-Pro, just be the best in the game. I try not to think about it too much. I just try to go out there and play my best and just let the chips fall where they may.”
Evan Engram Surprises With Pro Bowl Nod
Engram, an enigmatic talent in the eyes of many Giants fans, is on pace for the second-highest receiving yards total of his four-year career. Through 15 weeks of play, the former first-rounder has hauled in 54 receptions for 572 yards (10.6 average) and one touchdown. He’s also chipped in with five rushing attempts for 21 yards and another touchdown on the ground.
“I’m really just truly thankful,” Engram said of his selection. “Just blessed and thankful for just the whole process that I’ve been through. This past year has been hard for literally everybody. Me and my mom were talking about it this weekend.”
The NFL announced in October that the league would be canceling the actual Pro Bowl game this season in an effort to shift majority focus onto completing a season during the coronavirus pandemic. Instead, the league plans to go virtual with the festivities, with players going head-to-head in EA Sports’ Madden 21.
“When they announced that, I was like, ‘That would be crazy if I made the Pro Bowl and we don’t even play the Pro Bowl,'” Engram said. “But I think they’re doing some Madden tournament. I’ve been playing a lot of Madden lately, so hopefully I can go win that.”
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Giants Pro Bowl Snubs
Numerous Giants players have the right for feeling a certain type of way after not receiving a Pro Bowl nod. The most glaring omission has to be safety Logan Ryan, if not for anything but the fact that he had been leading his position in fan votes, which account for a third of the total vote.
Ryan addressed the potential of making his first-ever Pro Bowl appearance with reporters ahead of Sunday night’s Browns game.
I think I’m definitely focused on the Browns first and foremost. I think being first place by just being a team-first player, I’m not really chasing stats, I’m trying to do whatever job the team asks me to do that week. I’m definitely trying to lead and inspire no matter what adversity I face this year on and off the field, no matter what our record states I’m trying to give my best.
Look, I played my butt off at Tennessee for years and felt like I deserved it and didn’t get it, so to have the recognition of the fan base, this great fan base and the amount of eyes on me, and playing here is something I embrace and something I love of the pressure cooker that New York City is with the lights always on you. So I love the fans for them to vote me as many times as they did, making the Pro Bowl would be a huge accomplishment, I haven’t made it yet in my career and it’ll be a huge goal checked off my list.
Other notable snubs include linebacker Blake Martinez and defensive lineman Leonard Williams. Martinez currently ranks fourth (tied) in the NFL with 128 tackles and owns a PFF grade of 75.6, a career-high. Williams has been a disruptive force this season, collecting 8.5 sacks. With two games to go, he’s logged 11 tackles for loss, which is tied for a career-best. His 24 QB hits check in just one behind his all-time best of 25 from 2017.
Fellow defensive linemen, Dexter Lawrence and Dalvin Tomlinson, as well as running back Wayne Gallman, safety Jabrill Peppers and kicker Graham Gano also deserved consideration.
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